Industry Influencers 2017

The real estate industry in Australia is full of colourful, interesting and hard-working personalities that continually shape our industry for the better. ELITE AGENT would like to acknowledge the contributions of these 50 influential leaders who inspire action, change the game, motivate others, break new ground and positively move the industry forward.



Managing Director and Head of Harcourts Coastal

A true leader in every way, who continues to help to create many other leaders in the industry. “He runs a great business where people come first.”


Managing Director, Cunninghams, current president REINSW

One of the great pillars of the industry for many years, and likely many more to come. “Friendly, personable and passionate about everything and everyone he touches.”


Managing Director and Founder – Harris Real Estate

Phil Harris leads with action. A superb craftsman of real estate practice, Phil has emerged as an industry leader with an equipoise and wisdom that is normally the domain of a much older person.

Phil Harris on Elite Agent:

Going all in with Phil Harris

The next generation


CEO, Wiseberry

Thomas is described as a big-picture thinker and ahead of the curve as far as leadership goes. For a long time, he has been a private man, building a franchise. But that may be about to change with him about to feature on Foxtel’s Industry Leaders. Watch this space.


Executive Director, McGrath Estate Agents

John McGrath was the original ‘game changer’ in real estate creating a business based on integrity and transparency and world class service delivery. Today, he remains at the top of the list of sought after trainers and coaches for his deep knowledge and passion for the industry.

John McGrath on Elite Agent:

What Got You Here Won’t Get You There

Goal Setting and Thinking Bigger

Feature Interview: Think Bigger, Part 1 and Part 2


Managing Director Mortons

In the industry for many years, Ewan is another who continues to win the hearts and minds of others. “Ewan Morton is one of those leaders who tells it how it is but at the same time has a keen mind and is always looking for ways of doing things better and more efficiently.”

Ewan Morton on Elite Agent:

Empowering People


Director of Ouwens Casserly Real Estate and Current president of REISA

One half of a $10 million turnover business and the youngest president of REISA, Ouwens says of his role, “ensuring the realestate profession is looked after as best as possible is something that I feel is critical.”

Alex Ouwens on Elite Agent:

The Now Generation

On the couch at AREC 2016


co-CEOs of Toop&Toop Real Estate

Known for innovation in projects across technology, finance and marketing dimensions in their successful SA business, the duo are also leaders in the wellness movement offering staff access to a 24 hour gym and a nourishing pantry to boost both productivity and positivity.


Third-generation leader of the Ray White Group and Joint Chairman

After being told in 1972 at age 31 by his father, “It’s all yours to run. Be a good leader”, Brian White continues to live up to that legacy successfully at the helm of Australia’s biggest residential real estate group with over 1000 offices in Australia, New Zealand, South East Asia and Atlanta in the US.


Director, BresicWhitney

Sydney group BresicWhitney lead the way in pretty much everything, from marketing to PM, auctions and more. “Shannan is the outside the box thinker who is always a few steps ahead of everyone else.”


“If you obey all the rules, you’ll miss all the fun”

– Katherine Hepburn


Founder and CEO of Real+

There is no one in the industry that enjoys “breaking stuff” and then putting it back together better than Fiona Blayney of Real+. “Fiona has been around the industry for a long time, but that doesn’t stop her reinventing her own business and also helping others reinvent theirs.”

Fiona Blayney on Elite Agent:

Author archive

Working with the PM team to generate leads

Goal Setting in PM: Part 1 and Part 2

Breaking PM: Part 1 and Part 2


Marketing Director, Domain

“A rallying cry for the enfranchised”. If you haven’t seen Avalon Now you haven’t lived. Content marketing at its finest and most hilarious.


CEO, The Agency

Matt is that phenomenal mix of veteran and enthusiasm. Having experienced sales and organisational leadership through varied markets, Matt has stepped up as CEO of The Agency with nothing short of a revolution in mind for how property will be transacted in the future.

Matt Lahood on Elite Agent:

The First 100 days in office: Part 1

The First 100 days in office: Part 2


Chief of Growth, Ray White

A true industry thought leader that is also not afraid to tell it the way it is. “It’s only when we understand and acknowledge where the pain points for our customers are that we will have any opportunity to meet disrupters head on.”

Mark McLeod on Elite Agent:

Author archive

The core product of real estate, building an ecosystem


CEO, Console

New to the industry, Tim was handed the task of moving to the cloud in double quick time. “It’s time for property managers to stop being happily dissatisfied; we want to make them happy,” says Tim.

Tim Molloy on Elite Agent:

Every Agent Has a Story

To New Beginnings

Console Cloud has arrived


Managing Director, Stone Real Estate

Peter Mumford opened the first McGrath franchise on the Northern Beaches of Sydney and is continuing to blaze a trail, starting his own franchise group, Stone Real Estate.


Director of Marshall White, Bayside

Kate is a champion of doing things her way, working in “sprints” of 12 weeks and then taking plenty of time off to maintain work life balance; at the same time mentoring and encouraging young agents to be the best they can be.

Kate Strickland on Elite Agent:

Playing to Win

Striving to reach the next level

On the couch at AREC 2016


Broker/Owner RE/MAX Cairns

Tony Williamson is a principal that is not afraid to call a spade a spade. Is there a doctor in the house? Yes there is. While he used to be an accountant by trade, he has made a very successful real estate career out of ‘listen, diagnose, prescribe”.


Director, @home Property Management

“If you’re looking for a quick fix for rent roll growth you won’t find it”, says Michelle. Instead of calling it ‘customer service’ we should call it ‘business growth’. “No amount of marketing or listing presentation skill will outweigh word of mouth around service, particularly with the various social media platforms available today.”

Michelle Williams on Elite Agent:

A reputation for the extraordinary

At home with property management


Growth and Transformation Director, Lawlab

With complex paperwork still being one of the major pain points around property transactions, Lee Bailie is looking to change all that with Lawlab via Rundl; enabling a full digital journey for vendors and purchasers that simplifies and speeds up the process.

Lee Bailie on Elite Agent:

State-by-State Round-Up: Electronic Signatures, January 2017

Lawlab Launches National Conveyancing Partnership Program


“Leadership is not about a title or a designation. It’s about impact, influence and inspiration. Impact involves getting results, influence is about spreading the passion you have for your work, and you have to inspire team-mates and customers.”

– Robin Sharma


Director, Benson Auctions

Recently leaving Domain to focus on his auction business, Stu is also a regular guest on the Channel 7 sunrise show. While his calendar looks like it must be pretty full, he still manages to captures the interest of the crowds on social media with his no-nonsense, quick witted posts that always seem to gain serious engagement.

Stuart Benson on Elite Agent:

Gaining support for VPA


Sales consultant at First National Altitude

If you haven’t seen Agent Dan’s Facebook video montages, you have been missing out on a unique and hilarious mirror of the real estate industry. Dan’s take on buyers, open homes, competitors in the videos and shows all real estate agents that if you aren’t having fun, you aren’t doing it right.


Sales Consultant, Ray White Double Bay

Top agent in Double Bay and the undisputed king of Instagram, Gavin continues to show what it means to lead the pack when it comes to excelling in the digital interview.

Gavin Rubinstein on Elite Agent:

On the couch at AREC 2016


Head of Property Marketing, CoreLogic

At CoreLogic, Kylie is the “chief sense maker”responsible for cutting through the jargon of complicated data analysis, understanding the stories property data can tell and communicating them to the business and the industry. In the last two years she has tirelessly worked to create thought leadership material on vendor perceptions, buyer perceptions, ‘Big Data’, AffordableHousing and Industry Leadership.

Kylie Davis on Elite Agent:

Author Archive

Vendor Perceptions of Real Estate Agents

What Buyers Really Want, Creating Constant Referrals


Director of Mitchell PT and curator of the National Property Management Community

The PM community on Facebook chiefly curated by Hayley Mitchell has grown to almost 7,000 members to be a place of learning, growing, and sharing and a safe place for PMs when it’s been a rough day.

Hayley Mitchell on Elite Agent:

Every Agent Has a Story


Coach, Trainer, Auctioneer, Speaker

On Sunday nights, Tom Panos regularly gets more views than 60 minutes and there’s a reason: his common sense, no-nonsense authenticity coupled with a deep knowledge the industry and human behaviour continue to help agents develop stronger mindsets and smash their goals.

Tom Panos on Elite Agent:

Playing the Long Game

10 Questions You Need To Ask Yourself

Managing Vendors and Buyers + Mastering your Marketing

How to Get the Appraisal and Win the Listing


Coach, Trainer, Speaker

Speaking at more than 208 events last year across the US, UK, New Zealand and Australia, Josh is one of the truly global “goto” trainers in Australia.

Josh Phegan on Elite Agent:

Author Archive


Coach, Trainer, Speaker

Different strokes for different folks and there is no denying that Twiddle has a large and faithful tribe who swear by his training. While he looks tough and hangs out with Arnold Schwarzenegger, rumour has it he is actually a big softie.


Partner at Urban Property Agents

Ben Wakely is an agent in Brisbane (Bardon) who is doing excellent work with social media as a tool to educate his market. His weekly ‘Facebook Lives’ are very popular among both agents and consumers.


Owner – Black Diamondz Group

Monika was recently featured on China Central Television as an influential person in front of an audience of 1.3 billion, talking about her home and business in Australia.

Monika Tu on Elite Agent:

On the couch at AREC 2016


“Never try to be a thought leader. There’s no value in that. Just try to add value.”

– Chris Brogan.


Director of Sales,, speaker, digital thought leader

When we are talking about the future of real estate, and how consumer behaviour is changing, we want to be talking to Steve.

Steve Carroll on Elite Agent:

Gaining Momentum

Optimising your profile for the Digital Interview

Digital Trends and the Need for Speed


CEO, Agentbox

A software CEO that sees the value in integrating with the outside world from a single pane of glass… why do things in multiple places, when it can be done from the one app?

Eddie Cetin on Elite Agent:

The Need for Speed

10 Sources to Grow Your Database

4 Database Habits to Drive Listings



Chief Economist, REA Group

One of Australia’s leading property experts, Nerida is always looking at the trends and data to provide up to date content for SkyNews plus a range of media outlets (including Elite Agent).


Managing Director, Richardson and Wrench

Provides thoughtful, practical, useful commentary on political and economic factors impacting the industry.


Chief Inventor, REA Group

As chief inventor at, the world always wants to know what’s cooking in Nigel’s kitchen. Usually one of three things consumers like: Time, Trust and Transparency.

Eddie Cetin on Elite Agent:

Time, Trust and Transparency

Best Practice Property Marketing; Time, Trust and Transparency


CTO International CoreLogic

Innovation and thought leader, Greg invented and managed the nationally used media maximiser product which correlates advertising spend to selling success for real estate agents. Recently he’s been involved in another groundbreaking bot project with Kylie Davis, to be released soon.

Greg Dickason on Elite Agent:

Listing by numbers, using data to engage prospects


Head of Research, CoreLogic Australia

Tim’s expertise across property markets has positioned him as one of the country’s most experienced and popular property market analysts and commentators.

Tim Lawless on Elite Agent:

Author Archive


CEO Rockend

Alister is a forward-looking CEO, having taken the reigns of an organisation with many years of history in the industry. Not content with leaving good enough alone, Alister’s team helps businesses grow and evolve with a constant eye on the future and technology trends.

Alister Maple-Brown on Elite Agent:

The Power of Pure Cloud Computing

Is Artificial Intelligence the Future of Service?

Consumer Tech Goes to Work


Founder, Ireviloution

Always looking for the next game-changer and how the bar can be raised in property management, Jo is regularly called upon to consult and comment both here and overseas.

Jo on Elite Agent:

7 Ways to Raise the Bar in 2017

Which Structure is Right for You?

5 Emerging Technologies to Help You Stand Out


Director, Apmasphere

Ben, through Apmasphere, has been assisting to change the property management industry for the past 10 years. With the introduction of Halo, Ben continues to be at the forefront of the PM industry.

Ben on Elite Agent:

Growth in a Changing Industry

Numbers Game: The Science of Becoming a Peach


“Heroes are ordinary people that make themselves extraordinary”–

Gerard Way


Event Managers, TRET

If you’ve attended AREC, ARPM or an in house McGrath event in the last couple of years, then you will have experienced the spectacular work of these two ladies who pretty much do the work of two people each, always with big smiles, of course.


Managing Director, Cooley Auctions

Known for being one of Australia’s top auctioneers, Cooley is also a champion of the homeless; last August, the inaugural Real Estate Sleep Out raised almost $135,000 for Youth Off The Streets.

Damien on Elite Agent:

Cooley Auctions Golf Classic raises $500,000 for Youth off the Streets


CEO Coronis

Andrew Coronis has grown his father’s one office into a wholly-owned, end to end property group, while doing much good in the local community, supporting many charities including the Princess Alexandra Foundation, Leukaemia Foundation, Diabetes Queensland, Tour De Office, and more.


Director, RT Edgar Boroondara

If the industry could define a “good guy” it has to be Glen Coutinho. Clearly a devoted husband and father of five, Glen’s ability to give of himself and his joy in seeing joy in other’s make him the ultimate service champion.

Glen on Elite Agent:

The Block 2015: Behind The Scenes


Associate Director, Caporn Young

WAs ‘Trusted Advisor’ in real estate, Stefanie Dobro has a full trophy cabinet and looked up to by many. Often known to just call someone out of the blue to say “great job”, Stefanie sets the ultimate positive example for women (and men) throughout the industry.

Stefanie on Elite Agent:

The Trusted Advisor


Coach, Trainer, Speaker

Perhaps one of the ‘quieter’ coaches, Encina probably has the biggest heart of them all which is one of the things that sets him apart. If anyone needs help to Transform their career we know who to call.

Claudio on Elite Agent:

Author Archive

Understanding Your ‘Why’, Local Market Monitor

Telephone Technique and Cold Calling


Principal, First National Real Estate Byron Bay

Chris Hanley is a leader of leaders and has won the respect and affection of so many within the industry due to his generosity and central tenant that ‘good works’.

Chris on Elite Agent:

Good Does Work


Founder, Real Estate Excellence

Stacey Holt is a relentless guardian of property management best practice and compliance services. Serving as a front line property manager and office manager for over a decade, Stacey has walked the walk and her message resonates with many property managers who are on that line.


Coach, TMJ Coaching

For Tanja it’s always about the people and being of service. While she is still fairly new to the industry she made a big splash as a head coach in Transform this year, gaining a myriad of new followers of her ‘Soul FM’ radio.


Mindset Coach and Trainer

Jet Xavier is one of Australia’s leading mindset and elite performance coaches who, in 2017 through his wellness survey is causing a shift towards a more balanced perspective of success.

Jet on Elite Agent

How to Beat Call Reluctance

Are You Leaving a Legacy, Or Just a Life?

10 Things New Agents Need to Know